Feminist Songs…: Day 15, This Is Not A Feminist Song

Our final post comes to us from SIUE Women’s Studies program graduate,  and graduate student, Destiny Green.  Destiny is the 2014 winner of the Martha Welch Award, our program’s annual award to students who have demonstrated thoughtfulness and leadership in the context of women’s and gender studies. Her Master’s thesis work focuses on black masculinity.  Here, she reflects on the March 2016 Saturday Night Live song-skit “This Is Not A Feminist Song.”  If you wanted to know why we strove for a wide diversity in song choice, and why yesterday’s entry involved links to another diverse array of songs, this will go some way to explaining it. No one song could address the multiplicity of women’s issues. I leave the floor at last, and at the last, to Destiny.

–Alison Reiheld, Director of Women’s Studies at SIUE

The women of Saturday Night Live, featuring Ariana Grande, presented what they would consider to not be “a feminist song”—but yet they accomplished just that. They performed a song that served as a beautiful ball of Kimberle Crenshaw’s concept of intersectionality, Patty Collinsstandpoint theory, black feminists’ annoyances, and white feminist alliesanxieties alike.

Thank goodness for comic relief!

Though amusing and entertaining, these women captured real concerns in the realm of feminism in their lyrics:

Every woman has a struggle, and every struggle is real, but just try to write a song that captures every woman’s deal

Consider how many times you have to check yourself when writing in a heteronormative voice or when discussing women’s oppression, you somehow are never exhaustive enough (darn it, why do I always forget that every woman is not able-bodied??).

Overall, my favorite aspect of SNL is that they use their platform to discuss social justice issues and make them more palatable for viewers. Thanks SNL for welcoming everyone into our world (or worlds ;-] ) !

To read more, check out http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/snl-this-is-not-a-feminist-song_us_56e584f0e4b0b25c91823c18.

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